Counterintuitive: Listening Beats Talking?
Persuader Vs. The Persuaded
The Russian polymath Mikhail Bakhtin—one of the titanic minds of the twentieth century, though too neglected now—believed that in a dialogue the position of primacy is with the person who listens rather than the one who first speaks. After all, he said, we do not speak unless we anticipate a response; and we shape what we say in light of possible reactions.
–Alan Jacobs, The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction (NY: Oxford University Press, 2011) 55
Without some listener—you see—there would be no words launched.
Image credit: Kirk Livingston